this was an anglican church so it was composed of mostly brits. it was quite fun interacting with unfamiliar faces and meeting new people. i needed to do this and towards the end of the retreat i found myself using phrases that they used and sort of resorting to their style of humor. it did seem quite serious when we would get down to the "meet with god" bit. a quiet hush would come over the campers when we would enter into a time of worship and prayer. this DID bother me but because of the fact that i didn't know these people i was not wanting to step on any toes. "americans" already have a way of making their presence known and leave it to me to defy the stereotype's just to prove them wrong.
the sunday morning we were to leave we had one more time of breaking away from the bigger group and i had time with 2 guys. the leaders were free to find any scripture that they felt would be good to read together. because of the nature of the individuals i felt it was necessary to read ephesians 1(especially the bit about the eyes of the heart being opened to know the calling, inheritance, and power of god towards us). as i read this over and over to them and asked these guys to tell me in their own words what they thought it meant i was shocked to realize they had little to no understanding of the value of the christian walk. it was quite frustrating to me and i felt the best thing to do was to pray. i told the boys i would start and then they would say a prayer and then i would end it.
there was quite a disconnect. i was amazed that one of the guys couldn't even get a word out. he started out saying, "god i pray..." and that was it. i thought he was thinking and contemplating but he was at a loss for words. this is the picture of what is taking place in europe. i am not wanting to "take the mick out" on him (as they would say in england) but this young man grew up IN the church. prayer should be the language he only knows better than any other language.
sadly this is the state of the church, an illiterate, and seemingly powerless body of christ. but that is just it, once they gain literacy that power is attainable.
father, my prayer for this nation is not to embarrass them, nor to shame them but for them to be shocked into the revelation of YOUR desire to move in power across this land. reshape this church, refine this generation, may their illiteracy not frame what people, secular and religious, say or how they define their existence by.